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Auburn Public Schools Foundation Working to Bridge Local Learning Gap
Suzanne Whisler
Wednesday, August 26, 2020

(August 25, 2020 | Auburn, Neb.) Auburn Public Schools Foundation is part of a nearly $1.2 million statewide effort to bridge the learning gap in the face of Covid-19. Through a funding opportunity available exclusively to affiliated funds of Nebraska Community Foundation (NCF), Auburn Public Schools Foundation will receive $5000 in funding to benefit Auburn Public Schools. When combined with the required 1:1 local match, that’s a $10,000 investment in local students.

Funds from the NCF and the Auburn Public Schools Foundation will be used to purchase Chromebooks for students who are learning remotely at home because of health concerns. The Chromebooks will play a crucial role in ensuring these students receive an equitable and quality education by allowing them to access the same instructional content as their peers. Chromebooks will also be purchased for the district’s economically disadvantaged students who may not have devices to learn at home in the event they need to move towards all remote learning. Additionally, the funds will be used to purchase the HATCH Learning Platform for preschool students. The program engages preschool students in interactive learning experiences to help them grow academically and socially as young learners. 

Nebraska Community Foundation’s Bridging the Learning Gap initiative was capitalized by an anonymous donor and the Alice DeVoe Donor-Advised Fund, an affiliated fund of Nebraska Community Foundation, as well as several NCF donor-advised funds, and numerous local donors who have stepped up to help meet the 1:1 local funding match required of the opportunity. In Auburn, matching funds will come from the Auburn Public School Foundation.

“We are extremely excited to receive this grant and matching funds from the Auburn Public Schools Foundation,” stated Suzanne Whisler Director of School Improvement and Curriculum. “The funds will go a long way to ensure all students have an equitable learning experience. We are grateful for the continued support of the Foundation.”

Grants were approved and allocated by a committee of six volunteer NCF affiliated fund leaders who have educational expertise, including teachers, administrators, and school board members. All applications received funding. Importantly, learning gap needs were identified locally by school leadership, as were proposed solutions.

“We are deeply proud of the way the NCF network of affiliated funds came together to meet this need,” said Jeff Yost, president and CEO of Nebraska Community Foundation. “We are so grateful to the visionary donors who are supporting this important work and to the local leaders and educators who are rolling up their sleeves to ensure our kids receive the educational experiences they deserve, even in the midst of a global crisis.”

The Auburn Public Schools Foundation serves and promotes the continuous improvement of educational programs offered by Auburn Public Schools. The foundation fulfills its mission by providing financial aid, assistance, and support to students, faculty, staff, and administration of Auburn Public Schools. Foundation members include John Crotty, Peggy Groff, Cheryl Krafka, Beth Kernes-Krause, Carla Mason, Kendall Neiman, Daryl Obermeyer, Shannon Stemm, Kellie Fogarty, Beth Casey and Senator Julie Slama. 

About Nebraska Community Foundation

Nebraska Community Foundation unleashes abundant local assets, inspires charitable giving and connects ambitious people to build stronger communities and a Greater Nebraska. 

Headquartered in Lincoln, the Foundation serves communities, donors and organizations by providing financial management, strategic development, education and training to a statewide network of 1,500 volunteers serving 265 communities. 

In the last five years, 45,313 contributions have been made to Nebraska Community Foundation and its affiliated funds. Since 1994, Nebraska Community Foundation has reinvested $393.1 million in Nebraska’s people and places. For information, visit NebraskaHometown.org.